Guinness Black Lager
When I found out a couple of weeks ago that the “brilliant” brew masters at Guinness had developed a new brew called Guinness Black Lager it was like Christmas come early. I have always been a huge Guinness fan and when one of their new creations is set to release its hard not to get a little overexcited. As the package containing a few early samples arrived on my doorstep I think I may have set a new land speed record while sprinting with anticipation from my front door to my kitchen fridge. I hurriedly placed the samples as far to the back of the fridge as they could go, hoping that it might lessen the amount of time it would take before I could try the sure-to-be delicious brew. A few hours passed and I just couldn’t wait any longer. First things first, Guinness Black Lager is nothing like its predecessor. I opened the sample and immediately noticed the eerie absence of the trademark Guinness widget spurting its way to the top of the bottle. As I took a large swig, the texture was the first attribute to stand out. Almost flat, the beer has none of the creaminess of a traditional Guinness. Instead, it is much more akin to Guinness’s limited release 250th Anniversary Stout. The flavor is medium bodied and reminds me of a less potent version of the demographically specific Guinness Foreign Extra. After a few more tries one thing became abundantly clear, Guinness Black Lager is good, but not great. Maybe I had my hopes too high or maybe I’m just too used to their other brews, but when I found out Guinness would be producing a Black lager I was expecting something a bit sweeter or more malty with more toasted, rather than roasted, barley notes. If you’ve already had the Guinness Foreign Extra then you are well aware of the profile containing dark roasted coffee flavors combined with a slightly bitter finish. Basically, halve the strength (4.6 ABV) and pull back the coffee profile a bit and there you go, Guinness Black Lager. Essentially, if you consider yourself a true Guinness patron then you have no choice other than to go with blind devotion and purchase a 6 pack. However, the real question is after you’ve done your due diligence would you go out and get another one and so far, I’m not completely sold. Don’t get me wrong, it’s an interesting addition and it does fill in a gap as far as their line profiles are concerned. In the end, like it or not it’s another Guinness and honestly, how bad can that really be!
Price: $10.00 per 6 pack
Characteristics: Subdued compared to the Foriegn Extra with similar profiles. Slightly bitter finish.
Verdict: Buy now and give it a whirl!